Read the following fact pattern and then answer the questions that follow:

Jason, a seven year old child, is in the second grade. At school, his teacher noticed he was having problems sitting during class. She asked Jason why he was wiggling around in his seat and what was wrong. Jason replied that his daddy had given him “a real whipping” last night for coming home late after school. The teacher immediately sent Jason to the school nurse for evaluation. 

Questions:

A. Pursuant to Chapter 39 of the Florida Statutes, which persons have an affirmative obligation to report suspected cases of child abuse? In this fact pattern, does either the school teacher or the school nurse have an affirmative obligation to report this incident and are their any civil or criminal penalties imposed by law if they fail to report or if they incorrectly report the incident?

B. If a protective investigation is initiated pursuant to Chapter 39 of the Florida Statutes, is the State Department of Children and Families (the state child protection agency) obligated to work with law enforcement to investigate the case?

C. How effective are child abuse registries and what is there primary purpose? What rights do parents have in regards to having their name removed from the abuse registry?

D. Does the state have an affirmative legal obligation to protect children from abuse and what happens if the state fails in this obligation? What does a “special relationship” mean explained in Deshaney v. Winnebago County? 



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